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Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha

Steam News announces that Planetary Annihilation is now available as an early access title. This is causing quite a stir thanks to the $89.99 price it carries, which is steep for a finished game, much less a pre-beta. They include a note somewhat addressing this, explaining that this is the price they told their Kickstarter backers that early access would command:

Our pricing for this stage of early access was determined by our Kickstarter. The stages of our early access for ALL users, which was determined during our Kickstarter, is:

June through August: $90 for early alpha access, during the time where we're still locking down features and making tweaks to the flow of the game. This access is permanent access - you will be able to play through alpha, beta and on through retail. (Galactic Edition Equivalent with all addons)

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80. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 16, 2013, 13:59 Dev
 
Slashman wrote on Jun 16, 2013, 10:10:
Dev wrote on Jun 16, 2013, 03:11:
Prez wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 21:57:
I was just worried that was going to be the FINAL price! Their reasoning for charging that much in Alpha is sound though.
Their final price is going to be like $20 or $30 I think.

Which is why I said I'm waiting for the final release to buy.

There is no big payoff for getting in early on an alpha like this. People who really want to are more than welcome to. This isn't rocket science. And no one is twisting anyone's arm to make them buy in now. It's by choice.
Well there's probably 2 main types of people pre-ordering. One is the "zomg I can't wait another minute, I must play this game nao". They are going to be disappointed at this stage, and they are probably the ones who will be discouraged by the $90 price.
The other category would be people who think "man, this looks like it could be great, I want to be a part of that and make sure it really is, help find all the problems". That category won't have a problem as much of a problem with an incomplete test version, and is the ones the devs want to have. Their payoff is to help make the game the best it can be.
 
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79. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 16, 2013, 10:10 Slashman
 
Dev wrote on Jun 16, 2013, 03:11:
Prez wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 21:57:
I was just worried that was going to be the FINAL price! Their reasoning for charging that much in Alpha is sound though.
Their final price is going to be like $20 or $30 I think.

Which is why I said I'm waiting for the final release to buy.

There is no big payoff for getting in early on an alpha like this. People who really want to are more than welcome to. This isn't rocket science. And no one is twisting anyone's arm to make them buy in now. It's by choice.
 
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78. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 16, 2013, 03:11 Dev
 
Prez wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 21:57:
I was just worried that was going to be the FINAL price! Their reasoning for charging that much in Alpha is sound though.
Their final price is going to be like $20 or $30 I think.
 
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77. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 16, 2013, 00:53 Creston
 
90 bucks? Ouch... Not sure that's such a great move there. I understand not wanting to fuck over your Kickstarter backers, but then why put alpha access up for sale?

I half expected this to be a Microsoft announcement.

Creston
 
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76. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 21:57 Prez
 
I was just worried that was going to be the FINAL price! Their reasoning for charging that much in Alpha is sound though.  
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75. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 18:01 Dev
 
eRe4s3r wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 17:01:
Meh.. being called stupid for making the effort to find out actual numbers is low...

Maybe get some actual numbers?

Like the ones an Alpha backer would have you mean? Did I mention I am in the Alpha?... I just found that stat page interesting.... but hey, if you guys are so aggressive about my trying to find out how many BOUGHT it vs REGISTERED it then whatever.. I won't contribute to this topic anymore.
Thats entirely up to you. I'm being critical of silly numbers like "Actual stat is that about 150 people bought it on Steam".
I'm also laying out my sources and reasoning.
And when I made a mistake, I went back and edited in my post when someone pointed out that Alpha KS didn't have steam key's yet, I put in some notes about that.

If you have special sources from within the alpha, feel free to mention something like that, but the only links I saw were to that steamcharts site. I definitely want to know if there are other hard numbers out there.

I have no doubt that the actual number of sales they have is fairly low, I mean its $90. If it was $20 it would be much higher. That would bring with it a different set of problems.
My argument is about HOW low they are.

I think it does good to have a logical debate about things like this, and if I got too personal anywhere, I apologize.

This comment was edited on Jun 15, 2013, 18:07.
 
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74. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 17:44 Krizzen
 
Ozmodan wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 13:50:
This is the little guy using MAJOR shenanigans to scam money out of people for a alpha. Do you know how many games never make it out of alpha, many of the indie games never do.

If you want to be an outright fool and support them, go ahead, while the rest of us laugh at you.

Not really. I don't think this is a case where folks have pledged an absurd amount of money to some random Joe's Game Dev Shack. These guys atleast have some history in the genre. From the Kickstarter: "Total Annihilation, Command & Conquer, Supreme Commander and Demigod"

I agree with your notion that there's a possibility all the Kickstarter funds and now Steam funds they receive may completely go to waste. The consequences if Uber Entertainment fails are very, VERY grim. I think the whole Kickstarter (and early alpha/beta) path is high risk, high reward for both parties. In the end, folks can only hope the developer delivers on their promises. If not, then their next round of crowdsourced funding probably won't happen.

I think participating in early alphas/betas is something lots of people do mostly for the experience, and the thought that they somehow participated in the development of (hopefully) one of their favorite games. It has less to do with actual early access to the final game, since that's not what it's all about. So, if you think it's a scam, you might want to read the fine print.

This comment was edited on Jun 15, 2013, 17:53.
 
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73. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 17:01 eRe4s3r
 
Meh.. being called stupid for making the effort to find out actual numbers is low...

Maybe get some actual numbers?

Like the ones an Alpha backer would have you mean? Did I mention I am in the Alpha?... I just found that stat page interesting.... but hey, if you guys are so aggressive about my trying to find out how many BOUGHT it vs REGISTERED it then whatever.. I won't contribute to this topic anymore.
 
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72. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 17:00 SpectralMeat
 
Kanrad wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 15:08:
If you paid early on you where not just paying for alpha access you were funding the kickstarter.

Now that the game has reached Alpha stage it is no longer a kickstart. Implying they had the initial funding they needed. Please reference the concept of a kickstart.

So now that it is Alpha, and still apparently in need of more money, I would expect a lower cost of entry.

Keep in mind the simple fact of kickstarter games. You're concept and design of a game was so far off the market that no major company wanted to fund it. You had to turn to the general populace to fund your idea and get it off the ground. You now got that initial funding and want more help testing and refining said game.

At this point if you want more money your either, missed project cost projections, or enough normal folsk still don't back your idea. Now you can choose to try to make the game you want with the money you have or ask for more via alpha access.

Asking for more than the kickstart is just greed at this point as, in my opinion, you are asking others to back a flimsy or unoriginal idea at best.

Kickstarters are a good idea in theory. I worry that too many people are now abusing them as a way to make quick cash off of good will games or worse just flat out rip-offs.

Make a game worth my money or the best you can with what you have.
What you expect and what reality is are 2 different things.
Alpha access costs $90 kickstarter or otherwise.
If you find that greedy and too much then just wait for the finished game.

People want Alpha access are people who want to help the developer with feedback. If you want to help the developer then you shouldn't have any issues paying more for the game then everyone else that just wants to play the game the begin with.
 
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71. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 15:08 Kanrad
 
If you paid early on you where not just paying for alpha access you were funding the kickstarter.

Now that the game has reached Alpha stage it is no longer a kickstart. Implying they had the initial funding they needed. Please reference the concept of a kickstart.

So now that it is Alpha, and still apparently in need of more money, I would expect a lower cost of entry.

Keep in mind the simple fact of kickstarter games. You're concept and design of a game was so far off the market that no major company wanted to fund it. You had to turn to the general populace to fund your idea and get it off the ground. You now got that initial funding and want more help testing and refining said game.

At this point if you want more money your either, missed project cost projections, or enough normal folsk still don't back your idea. Now you can choose to try to make the game you want with the money you have or ask for more via alpha access.

Asking for more than the kickstart is just greed at this point as, in my opinion, you are asking others to back a flimsy or unoriginal idea at best.

Kickstarters are a good idea in theory. I worry that too many people are now abusing them as a way to make quick cash off of good will games or worse just flat out rip-offs.

Make a game worth my money or the best you can with what you have.
 
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70. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 15:05 Beamer
 
Why would people want access to an alpha of a game like Torrent, or any RPG? Everything would be broken, you'd hit gamebreaking moments, you'd likely have to start all over a few times, and you'd definitely have to start all over for the actual launch, but you'd be doing a lot of repeat things to begin.

Sounds tedious.

For action games, though, and particularly for multiplayer games, it makes some sense. When the full game hits you're already a veteran.
 
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69. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 14:46 SpectralMeat
 
Silicon Avatar wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 14:33:
Ninety bucks to play a crappy alpha? No thanks.

That is how much people on Kickstarter paid (before the game was even off the drawing boards) to get into the Alpha.
Do you think it would be fair to them to give Alpha access now to everyone for $30?
 
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68. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 14:33 Silicon Avatar
 
I only ever put in $15 or $20 for Kickstarters and for that amount I have to get a finished product out of it. Ninety bucks to play a crappy alpha? No thanks.

 
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67. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 14:33 Dev
 
Ozmodan wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 13:50:
This is the little guy using MAJOR shenanigans to scam money out of people for a alpha. Do you know how many games never make it out of alpha, many of the indie games never do.

If you want to be an outright fool and support them, go ahead, while the rest of us laugh at you.
Did you bother to look into the KS? I did recently after it was over. They have released games, and its not a 1 man shop. The KS also pulled in over $2 million, and that doesn't even count the steam sales that are going on right now. Do you really think that THIS project won't ever go further than the alpha that's out right now?

While your criticism might have a point in general about indies and unreleased projects (and incidentally, publishers also often cancel projects), it looks rather poorly aimed when referring to this particular one.
 
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66. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 14:29 BadIronTree
 
I POST THIS AGAIN BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE BLIND

"KICKSTARTER PEOPLE DON'T HAVE STEAM KEYS YET
 
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65. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 14:18 Dev
 
eRe4s3r wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 13:49:
Fair enough and I realize the mistake now (was glossing over what that number meant too quickly), more correct would be adding concurrent players per hour together .. so a around 1500 registered on steam.
That's a mistaken assumption. That assumes everyone who had the game played in that short timeframe. I have access to grim dawn and war for the overworld on steam and I still haven't tried them out. Haven't had time.

Lets examine the KS again shall we? Maybe get some actual numbers?
KS link
44,000+ backers. At a quick glance, something like 20% pledged at $90 or above levels. I'm going to call it close to 10,000.
Even if only half of those who have alpha access bothered to register the game on steam, that would still be near 5,000 and would be far above your number.
Plus, keep in mind that its 3rd top seller on steam right now, even above skyrim. So any of those sales are above and beyond the people who did the KS, those are direct $90 steam sales. Those sales (not the KS people) are whats driving the steam top sellers numbers.

Far more likely its 15,000+ people on steam who have registered it than the silly 1500 number, or the even sillier 150 number.

Edit: I'm not a backer so I don't know for sure, but if the comment about the KS people not yet having steam keys is true, than the above might not apply. I still stand by the reasoning though, that its faulty to add up concurrent, and that 1500 sales sounds low to me to make the top 3 on steam beating skyrim.
Even if that's 100% accurate, that's still over $100,000 and isn't at all shabby for 2 day sales of a $90 game alpha.

This comment was edited on Jun 15, 2013, 14:43.
 
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64. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 13:50 Ozmodan
 
This is the little guy using MAJOR shenanigans to scam money out of people for a alpha. Do you know how many games never make it out of alpha, many of the indie games never do.

If you want to be an outright fool and support them, go ahead, while the rest of us laugh at you.
 
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63. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 13:49 eRe4s3r
 
jacobvandy wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 10:50:
eRe4s3r wrote on Jun 15, 2013, 04:33:
MoreLuckThanSkill wrote on Jun 14, 2013, 23:54:
Dev wrote on Jun 14, 2013, 22:57:
And yet this is the 3rd best selling item on steam right now, ahead of skyrim.

Where are you getting that data?

This indicates otherwise?

Although maybe there is a more up to date list somewhere...

Actual stat is that about 150 people bought it on Steam...

Steam Charts

Lmao, that's not what that means at all. You can most certainly not look at "141 CONCURRENT peak players" and assume that to be the total number of sales. Biggest logical fallacy ever. That's like saying only 40k people bought Civ V because that was about the peak yesterday. However many millions of people play Dota 2, the peak was at 300k.

Fair enough and I realize the mistake now (was glossing over what that number meant too quickly), more correct would be adding concurrent players per hour together .. so a around 1500 registered on steam.
 
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62. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 13:40 jacobvandy
 
The game is getting made, regardless of people buying it on Steam. It's really a courtesy that they've made it publicly available at this point. Obviously there was/is demand for it, that's why it's for sale to begin with, and why it's on the Top Sellers list. I think it's unlikely that the people raging about the price right now will end up *not* buying it later on. If they don't, they're probably not the kind of person who'd have been interested in this type of game anyway.  
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61. Re: Planetary Annihilation's $90 Alpha Jun 15, 2013, 13:18 Krizzen
 
I think it's hilarious how everyone rages at the business practices of the big guys, EA, Actiblizzard, etc. Everyone bitches about preorders, prices, DLC, and so on.

Then, the small guy finally finds a way to make their game without all the shenanigans. They find a way to let people that actually *want* their game and want *them* to develop it, then everyone flips the fuck out.

While "putting your money where your mouth is" by not pre-ordering the latest Colladoody likely won't put Activision out of business, it will definitely kill the little guys.
 
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